Tough competition for signings as New Mills seek new faces

New Mills joint boss Dave Birch admitted it had been a tough summer so far as his side try to compete with some big budgets elsewhere to bring in players that can help them go one step further than their third place finish in NCL Division One South.

Tuesday, 12th July 2022, 3:54 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th July 2022, 3:55 pm

As the Millers continue their pre-season preparation, Birch said: “I won't lie, it's been a very tough pre-season – the most testing since I have been here for one reason and another.

“There is a lot of money floating about at our level at the moment at clubs in quite close proximity to ourselves – and good luck to them. It's just what we are up against as we try to get the right players in.

“We have lost a few players over the summer – two have gone playing her higher which we have sent with our blessings, two have left as they were not getting opportunities, which is understandable, and one other has gone which I don't really want to talk about as it's not landed very well with me. We move on.

Dave Birch - tough battle to bring in new faces at New Mills.

“We needed to replace both centre halves as both have moved up the pyramid. It was never going to be easy but we have done it with two very good players in my opinion.

“It's too early to name them until the signings are complete but we are very pleased with what we've got – one is a young lad and the other 26 and experienced and he actually won this division last year which is a big coup for us. They are what we needed.

“We are having a look at a couple of forwards and need to strengthen in one or two areas still.”

Another three of last season's players have signed on for another season this week.

Former Burnley forward Akim Samms joined the club in the summer of 2021 and immediately became a key figure in the side before injuries took their toll during mid-season.

He returned to form late on in the campaign and his resurgence saw the Millers show their best form in the latter league games.

Samms has made 31 appearances, scoring six goals.

Young striker Jake Brooks, who has progressed through the club’s, has now registered and has the chance to impress and earn a regular first team squad place.

Also staying is wide player Eliot Cooke, who signed in November 2019, going on to impress in both attack and and full-back with six goals in 58 outings.